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Ricky was saved at the age of seven, at Faith Baptist Church, where his dad was pastor, in Bishopville, SC. Ricky started singing with family as a young man and continued through his teen years. In 1987 he began his career in music playing piano with a Lance Carpenter trio, called the Campmeeting Trio. They traveled and sang in various camp meetings across the south. In 1988 he began singing lead with his first group, the Campmeeting Boys. In 1991, he formed a male trio, Kindred Spirit. They won many talent contests and were very successful on the local level. Ricky sang solo for 2 years from 1994 to 1996. In 1996, he joined the Wilburns, from Carthage, Tennessee, where he gained national recognition and media attention. In 1999, he returned to South Georgia to form Ricky Atkinson and Compassion.
Ricky is most noted as being one of Gospel music's top songwriters, writing many of today's most memorable Southern Gospel songs. Along with being a songwriter, he is producer, arranger, owner of two publishing companies, owner of two record labels, both operating under Resting Place Music Group.
Ricky's most noted songs written or co-written:
This Valley is for Me #1
Resting Place #1
Left Behind #7
Blessed be the Name of the Lord #1
Good Time Today in the House of the Lord #7
I'm Blessed #5
The Prodigal #2
Only Gonna Never Die #2
Jesus Can #1
Based On a True Story #4
Who's At the door #7
The Prodigal's Father #4
Table of the King #4
One More Time #9
*I Have Not Forgotten #1
*(#1 song for 2007 and Singing News Fan Award Song Of The Year 2007)
This is a short list of Ricky's top ten songs. He has also written numerous top 40 songs. His lyrics are being used by God in a wonderful and miraculous way.
"Ricky has the ability somehow to take your problems and cares, and make them his own, and to somehow get you closer to God's love with his thoughts, feelings and music."
~Pastor Garrie Lyons of Harvest Seekers Gathering